InvestEU Investment Committee Approves Green Projects
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is committed to providing over €1.1 billion in financing through direct investments or financial intermediaries to aid EU member countries in achieving their complete green potential. The ultimate goal is to enhance their sustainability and minimise their impact on the environment.
Guarantees amounting to approximately €150 million for the initial EBRD operations have been sanctioned by the InvestEU Investment Committee. This decision is a result of the InvestEU guarantee agreement between the European Commission and EBRD, which is valued at up to €450 million.
The newly approved financing will enhance green and sustainable investments in the energy, transport, and municipal sectors, enabling them to tackle their environmental challenges effectively.
This funding will provide support to the EBRD's thriving Green Cities initiative, which operates in over 50 urban regions to expedite their transition to green infrastructure. It will facilitate recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, bridge infrastructure gaps, and enhance the competitiveness and socio-economic alignment of the recipient EU countries with other member states.
Moreover, financial institutions operating in these countries will extend loans to fund investments in sustainable transport, renewable energy, energy efficiency, and residential buildings.
This move will aid in reducing CO2 emissions and energy consumption in the building and transport sectors. Additionally, it will help address the crucial matter of carbon intensity in the economies of these countries and mitigate the energy crisis resulting from the Russian conflict with Ukraine.
The EBRD will also facilitate green investments in an extensive array of industrial and infrastructure projects. These initiatives will target private companies that are grappling with elevated technology costs, higher perceived risks, and a lack of accessible financing.
The projects that are expected to receive funding encompass a wide range of areas, including energy and resource efficiency in commerce and industries, circular economy and recycling schemes, sustainable food production, green buildings, renewable energy, energy storage and grids, water and wastewater, and low-carbon and urban transport.
Odile Renaud-Basso, the EBRD President, expressed her delight over the partnership with the European Commission, saying that it would accelerate the transition to a green future across the EU countries where the bank invests, particularly in their municipal, industrial, and SME sectors, leveraging their private-sector and policy expertise.
Paolo Gentiloni, the European Commissioner for Economy, praised InvestEU's role in promoting a sustainable and inclusive social economy. The agreement would enable central and eastern European countries, along with Greece, to unlock their potential for green growth and environmental sustainability, address infrastructure gaps, enhance competitiveness, and foster socio-economic convergence. He also stated that InvestEU would foster social inclusion by supporting green and sustainable investments and aiding the path towards a more just and prosperous future.